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Burmese Gilded kammavaca Pali Manuscript

AGE: – 19th Century
CONSTRUCTION: – Wooden covers, pages cloth lacquered and gilded. Pali Script – Tamarind lacquer. Gilding worn in places, 2 pages with corner damage otherwise good condition
DESCRIPTION: – Burmese Gilded kammavaca Pali Manuscript

LENGTH: – 59cm
WIDTH:– 14.5cm
HEIGHT: – 5cm
WEIGHT:– 2.6 kg.
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#21a

This Burmese Gilded kammavaca Pali Manuscript comprises of two outer wooden covers and sixteen internal pages or leaves which make this a complete kammavaca Pali manuscript. The outside covers are incised with Burmese mythological figures and gilded with gold leaf. These particular covers show kinaree and kinarar, two half bird half human figures. They are a symbol of the karenni states in Myanmar. They also represent the symbol of true love.

The kammavaca manuscript is a traditional Burmese gilded Pali prayer manuscript, usually accompanied by a novice monk on his initiation into the monastery. Sometimes, these Pali manuscripts are presented to the monastery by the family of the novice monk during his dedication and ordination ceremony.

Plain red lacquer coats the inside of each wooden end cover. On the inside front cover there is a dedication in Burmese script, this script would more than likely show the name of the monk and the year in which he entered into the monastery. The Pali script is more than likely written with the black sap from the black varnish tree (Melanorrhoea usitata).

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